- What famous person would your friends say you are most like?
- What would you be doing professionally if you had it to do it all over again?
These were the two impromptu questions I was asked when being introduced to my new colleagues on a conference call. Fran Drescher is the famous person my friends would proclaim as my doppelganger. We share an ethnic look and a nasal voice. Question one – done and easy.
Question two – not so much. I was in a minor panic as my mind searched for an acceptable answer. I blurted out, “If I had to do it all over again I would be college professor.” This was a perfectly acceptable answer. It was also a complete lie. I could never tell the truth. If I really had a “do over,” I would use it to be a mom. Motherhood would be more than my profession; it would be my vocation I would have a whole house full of kiddos. I instantly hated my lie, but I knew to tell the truth would be career suicide.
As a barren woman, I really don’t understand the hostility towards motherhood. This animosity lives in both the secular and religious communities and even within moms themselves. The resentment towards moms with a large number of children is palpable. Millions of men & woman faithfully watch humans behaving badly on television shows like: REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ORANGE COUNTY, GIRLS BEHAVING BADLY, & KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS, etc. Those same people who have no issue with the behavior or content of those programs find Michelle Duggar from 19 KIDS AND COUNTING sick and disgusting. What is Michelle’s crime? She is the mother to a lot of happy well-adjusted children.
Ladies, we have contributed to this resentment of motherhood. We direct our hairdresser to not make us look like a mom. We don’t want to drive a mini-van because we don’t want to look like a mom. We dress immodestly because we don’t want to look like a mom. There is even a web-site that instructs women on how to not look like a mom. Crazy I tell ya. That is why I’m so mad at myself for chickening out on my conference call and giving that lame answer.
Mothers are the givers of life. Mothers are part of the domestic church (in which Christ’s church is the model). Mothers are protectors and comforters. Mothers are educators and disciplinarians. Mothers are self-giving and self-sacrificing. Mothers are role models. Mothers are maternal. Mothers offer affection and tenderness. Mothers are the center of the universe for those they are mothering.
No greater form of authentic feminism exits for women than motherhood. If anyone tells you different; they are WRONG. Motherhood may come in the form of birthing babies, adoption, fostering, step-parenting or spiritual motherhood. Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary is our role model. She is the supreme mom and the genuine feminist. Saint Pope John Paull II referred to Mary as the human being who has responded better than any other human to God’s call. Now that is someone I want to look like. So Ladies, put on those comfy mom jeans, hike them proudly up to your chin and jump in the metaphoric min-van.
YOU ARE A MOTHER (whether you’ve birthed babies or not).